Your Outdoors Will Look Like Elysian Fields

Long before your visitor rings the doorbell, or says “Hello” to the receptionist at the front desk, he will pass through the driveway, forming the first impression of you and your company.

The saying, “first impression is the Best impression” may be a cliché but it holds absolutely true even today. Landscaping services by professionally managed companies will create a positive and indelible impact on visitors.

Space:

Space is not a constraint for a creative intellect. Given the space, a talented landscaping service team will create designs that will be a perfect combination of aesthetics and culture without compromising on utility. You can still have your parking spaces; only more picturesque looking.

Site Specific:

Landscaping consultancy services are site specific and personalized. Designers study the site, its shape and contours, the terrain and the adjoining landscape before conceptualizing a custom made creative for your grounds.

Mobility for cars and human beings is synthesized with the overall aesthetics producing a delightful fusion of convenience and beauty.

Nature Friendly:

Your dream of a green paradise will be brought to reality with the nature-friendly approach. Water consciousness is at the forefront of environmental concerns and a great landscape design achieves radiance without splurging on that precious resource: water. Low water consumption and drought-resistant flora, which are a treat to the eye, will embellish your outdoors.

Hardscaping:

Neat rows of hedges on either side of the walkway or driveway, brilliantly coloured plant life that catches the eye, fragile, tantalizing creepers climbing the walls, exquisite geometric and designer patterns in manicured lawns are an integral part of landscaping.

But, well thought out and creatively planned hardscaping is equally important. The design and configuration of tiles on the walkway, the lighting equipment, the colour of the lamps, the layout and the design of the patio, and the exterior appearance of your building are all an integral part of the total design outlook.

Landscaping visualizes a harmony between the softscape and hardscape of your outdoors and exteriors for a synergistic design where the beauty of one is accentuated by the other.

Soil Management:

Water can be both friend and foe when it accumulates in the plant beds or erodes soil. Landscaping includes the study of the terrain and soil compositions, and solutions such as re-bedding of turf, drainage slopes, retaining walls that serve as nourishment for landscape without deleterious effects on soil and surrounding topography.

Beyond the Ground Level:

Landscaping has developed its scope above the ground level. Terrace gardens can be developed with a personality that speaks eloquently of the owner or the CEO. A careful selection of soil, flowers and plants, an irrigation system using water harvesting resources, a layout that leaves space for hosting a small party or meeting, and a counter for service of food and beverages can all be made a part of this open-air arrangement.

Landscaping Package:

Designing and beautification apart, landscaping services also include weed trimming, edging, pond cleaning, mulching, mowing, pruning, lawn aeration, fertilizing, leaf removal, irrigation maintenance, servicing of annuals and lots more. The beauty of the outdoors requires tender, loving care to keep it looking forever young and attractive.

Landscaping services will help you spend more of your time outdoors and you will love it.

Design Your Own Garden

When we read the news and various magazines, when we go on vacations and even simply walk around the city – we always get exposed to the fact that some takes care of all these gardens.

Every garden has got its own characteristics and design. Some are designed for practical uses; others seem to be there for beauty. But what is common to all the good looking gardens out there is – that some is responsible for them.

By responsibility, I mean that somebody planned them and somebody is doing maintenance on almost a daily basis.

What Is Gardening
Gardening involves many aspects, including esthetic design, botany, mixing and blending colors, and of course knowing how to keep this whole masterpiece together.

A good gardener knows how to design the right garden, prepare the maintenance plan and he also needs to fit into the strict monetary budget that we have.

What Garden Do We Want
Like any other service, gardening services can be approached using two main views:

The first is to choose what exactly we need, what kind of a garden we want, the design, the colors and even the types of flowers – and then bid for the best price and service.

The second one is to let the gardening services suggest the plan by themselves.

While the first is much easier to perform, most of the people usually don’t really know exactly what they want from the garden. So knowing that, you need to at least have some general direction in your mind.

This general direction includes the size of the garden (important technical issue) and the main scenario – what we want it to feel, what we need to use it for etc. For a gardener it will be hard to plan when you have no idea of what you want. So you’ve got to have some basic frame in mind.

How to Choose Gardening a Service
So, now that we understand the various issues involved in gardening, arises the question – how to select a gardening service.

First, before checking out the possible companies out there – always prepare your budget. The budget should usually be the amount of money that you’re willing to spend.

Second, always look for feedbacks and recommendations – and with gardening they are easy to find. Check the gardens that you know in the area and start with the services that you like the most.

Third, when you choose the company that fits your budget and needs – always have a written document that summarizes what you’ve agreed upon. Words of mouth mean nothing in this kind of business, so always write everything down.

So take a deep breath, imagine your new garden and start planning and looking for a service that will make it happen for you.

Home Lighting Tips For Home Improvement

Improving the overall look of the house is actually not a hard thing to do if you know how to experiment with your lighting by using various light fixtures in different rooms. There are actually several home lighting tips that will help you create a different ambiance in your house. This way, you wouldn’t necessarily need to spend a lot of money buying expensive furniture just so you can improve the interior of your home.

Below are some of the home lighting tips which will help turn your house from being “just normal” to extraordinary and really welcoming.

When you are starting to decorate and improve the lighting inside your kitchen, it is best to remember that the health needs of your family should be taken into consideration before anything else. Florescent strip lights are usually the fixtures that are placed inside the kitchen, and so you should start with removing them since they are not good for the health – they are usually causing nausea and headaches to many people. Instead it is best to use halogen spot lights and under counter lighting in order to have sufficient light directed to the place where it is needed the most. Good task lighting is very important in any cooking area.
The case is almost the same when decorating bedrooms. There should be plenty of lights located in dressing areas; however, bedside lamps should always be present in order to create a dramatic and more intimate ambience inside the rooms. This is also ideal for honeymoon and romantic settings, and will add to the intimacy shared by couples living inside the house. Task lighting here is also extremely important, particularly if the people in the bedroom like to read a book now and then before falling asleep.
For lounges, you can always create beautiful lighting effects using general central lighting added with wall lights and different table or desk lamps. The size of the lamps would depend mostly on the kind of illumination that you want to have in the room. For example if you want to have a brighter area, then it is suggested to buy the larger lamps to go with the room arrangement, of course, making sure that the room is not too small for placing a large light fixture in it.
If you want a rather ambient and cozy illumination with home lighting tips, you can have several smaller lights strategically placed in various parts of the room. A few table or desk lamps on various coffee tables or a few well places floor lamps that spread out the light from the corners of the room are a perfect example of achieving this.

 

Kitchen Design Tips To Keep You Sane

Are you thinking of getting a new kitchen for your home? They can be expensive – very expensive, so knowing what you want before you ask for a designer to come to measure up is important. It is also critical that you stay as sensible as possible. With one decision, you could end up spending vast amounts of money on things you don’t need. Here are some common sense tips to help you avoid making the same mistakes others have.

Don’t go over the top

Unless you are rich and have money to burn, try to stay as grounded as possible when choosing the materials for your kitchen. Sure, those spanish tiles are nice – but they are also hand made and only a few of them have the fossil patterns in you like. Do you need to get more ordered to cover the kitchen floor or wall? Probably not if you look at it sensibly. A few tiles dotted here and there will suffice and make the kitchen look more interesting too.

Avoid buying anything that is so special that you either can’t easily get the parts to fix it if it goes wrong, or that it has to be imported from far away. You will be dealing with local installers and repairers, so why not use local suppliers too.

Change is not good

After you have planned the kitchen, ordered the cupboards, shelves, work surfaces and the white goods, you cannot really change anything. Even the smallest change will throw out the whole project and you might find yourself with installation staff who are cursing you under their breath. Even an inch being taken off the edge of a work top will make a difference to the overall appearance of the kitchen.

Spending too much

Set and stick to a budget for your kitchen design. It is easy to get carried away and spend more than you should. Try setting the maximum amount you can spend and then try to reach only 80% of that figure. These kinds of projects will always end up costing more money that you thought. The extra money can be used to pay for additional work if problems are discovered or to fill the kitchen with nice things after it is finished.

Choose the right contractor

When choosing the person who will install your kitchen for you, make sure that you hire someone who has experience in fitting kitchens. It might be cheaper to use a general contractor, but someone who is an all rounder will not be as good as a qualified kitchen fitter. This is a good opportunity to speak to friends to see who did their work, ask local contractors for examples and testimonials and get the right man (or woman) for the job.

Stick to the design

This is your kitchen and therefore, it should be your design and ideas. Make sure that the contractor sticks to the plan and does not deviate from the colors or designs you want. Their idea of what looks good will be different to yours. Stick to your guns if they propose changes, unless it is obvious that a design problem has been encountered that you have not thought of.

How much should you spend?

We can all play a game where we think up our dream kitchen but is it practical to spend thousands on something that you can get for hundreds? Buying flip-down televisions and giant walk-in refrigerators might sound like a good idea, but they will totally blow your budget. They are also never a good return on investment if you decide to sell the house. Concentrate on the main fixtures of the kitchen, which will add more value to your home.

Flooring Services

There are lots of things to consider when thinking about flooring services. If you are just starting to think about this then this short flooring services guide will help you to make some good decisions. It will also be of great help to your service provider if you have a clear idea of what you want that assists them in making decisions about what is best for your project. It will also help you both to control the cost and get the roof that you want and need.

1. What kind of flooring services do you want? Is it domestic, business, wood, concrete? Can you describe the kind of flooring you want: the kind of surface, covering, colour. The more detail you have the better.

2. Flooring services can include many other possible features like supports, tiling, door thresholds. Think about what kind of weight the floor will have to hold, and the way you want the floor to look.

3. Why do you want a floor in any case? Some people think they need a completely new floor when all is required is a renovation. A good flooring services provider will advise on this and make recommendations based on your budget

4. Think ahead. Is your floor in a room that you might convert one day? This might make a difference as to what you decide.

5. There are floor coatings and coverings to think about. You don’t need to know the details as your flooring service will recommend for you. But make sure they explain the advantages of one kind over another before you spend

6. Plan your how much you want to spend carefully and how much you can afford to spend – there’s often a difference. It’s generally true that when getting a new floor the better quality you can afford the longer it will last and the better it will look.

7. A new floor like any building project takes time and needs project planning. Agree start and finish times with your provider and how they will carry out the work

8. Get a few quotes before you decide which provider to use. Don’t just go for the cheapest or even what seems to be the most detailed – both can be unintentionally deceptive.

9. Obviously you need to agree a price for your new floor before they start – get it in writing.

10. As the work progresses try to get a verbal report from your provider as to what they are doing at each stage and how long it will take. This will build a relationship with them, show that you are monitoring the process, and indicate that you are keen to get the job done.

House Painting Tips For Beginners

After watching some home makeovers, you would definitely notice that redefining the interior color of any residence gives it a fresh and comfortable look. Consequently, homeowners get the itch to do the same. Those who cannot hire professionals for the task, search for house painting tips which can get them carry on with the task by themselves. Do you want to give this a try as well? Learn from the following insights.

Cover Up – To start off, cover any fixtures attached on the walls or ceilings. Cabinets, wall or hanging lamps, light switches and faucets among others must be properly covered. This will keep them from getting unwanted paint drips.

Smoothen Your Walls – Scrutinize your walls for imperfections. They could have acquired holes, chips or cracks through time. Patch the holes and cracks. Even out the chips. You will need enough patching paste and putty knife to get this right.

Dust Off – This is key in painting a house. Painting over dust-filled walls causes premature cracking and peeling of dry paint. Thus, it is important to clean your walls, baseboards, ceilings and crown moldings. Use damp cloth in doing so. This will keep the dust from fluttering.

Choose The Right Paint – When it comes to the color, it is best to consider the suggestions of the people who are living with you. You do not want this home makeover task be the cause of cold war amongst you, right? Once the hues have been decided upon, purchase some test gallons. Coat sections of your wall so that you can get a view of the finished effect. Moreover, decide on the type of paint you opt to purchase – latex-based or oil-based. When it comes to protection against daily wear and tear, oil-based coat is the better option. For that, they are expensive. When it comes to cleaning ease of cleaning, latex-based is the coat to go for as it can be cleansed with soap and water.

Pick The Right Brush – This is one of the commonly neglected house painting tips. Brushes are made up of natural materials or synthetic materials like nylon. Keep in mind that natural bristles go with oil-based coats, stains and varnishes. Latex-based coats, on the other hand, require nylon bristles.

Apply The Primer – Never apply the paint without priming the surface first. This can cover up the patches that you made on the walls. Before proceeding with the priming, open your windows for proper ventilation. Roller brushes are the best tools for priming. Remove excess lint on in it with the use of masking tape. Lint would mix with the coat if not removed.

Mix The Coats – A paint stick with holes would get your mixing right. For consistent color on all of your walls, use a big bucket to mix all your paint. This is advisable especially for large rooms.

To finish off these house painting tips, eliminate the paint fume by leaving windows open for a few days. Additional natural remedies to this include placing bowls filled with vinegar and baking soda in the room. Onions also absorb paint fumes fast.

The Janitor In Your Building

Below is a quote from the movie The Barbershop. I replaced the word “barber” with “janitor”.

“See, in my day, a janitor was more than just somebody who sit around in a FUBU shirt with his drawers hanging all out. In my day, a janitor was a counselor. He was a fashion expert. A style coach. Pimp. Just general all-around hustler. But the problem with y’all cats today, is that you got no skill. No sense of history.”

The Janitor. The person you pass in the hallway everyday. He (or she) is not exactly an international man (or woman) of mystery nor is he the ignorable ghost some treat him as. Don’t picture him as the person who dances with the dookie rather envision a vintage soul that posses a key to any problem and can polish up an issue no matter how grimy it is. From my experience it seems that status dictates the way a person is treated by others. Whether it’s the cleaning crew that details your Hummer H2, the CEO of your company or the concubine you practice making babies with every Thursday night; this mode of thought has been around ever since a social structure existed. Thus, people not having the courtesy to throw a simple “hello” to the custodian.

Personally, I didn’t always have this outlook on the janitor and janitor’est folks. Years of observing office politics gradually tuned my mind’s guitar. Office politics is a sad thing. Supervisors shining the asses of General Managers, regular office workers cutting each others throats for promotions, Corporate Auditors treating branch visits like a damn FBI raid. You would think this is Ancient Rome during a power struggle. It’s funny because in the office you can’t talk like a normal human being would. You have to hold your tongue if the person you’re talking to is known to be a snitch, a supervisor or an executive’s nephew. Who in the heck can I turn to for some normal interaction? You guessed it…The Janitor. He is the most unbiased person in your building and that is why he is the coolest person in the building. You could shoot the shit with no boundaries because he has no ties to your company. You want to throw a couple F-Bombs in your conversation? Sure, why not. Trading conversation with the janitor makes you feel like you’re on the construction yard. You need somebody to gripe to about how F’ing ignorant your boss is? The janitor will listen while he’s cleaning windows.

The janitor isn’t only an oasis of conversation, but he can also assist you during the days you are broke-or Ramen Days. If you’re running low on any bathroom supplies he is there to quarterback a few toilet paper rolls your way. If you don’t have enough money to take a girl out on a date the janitor can give you access to the roof so you could can set up a romantic candle light feeding bonanza. Bum a smoke, shoot some whiskey with him on your 15 minute break, ask him to pass a note to the cute girl/guy from the company downstairs, borrow cleaning solution when you spill ketchup on your tie. The scenarios are endless.

Great Roofing Tips

Always maintain a system to keep yourself secured whenever you go up on the roof. If you end up slipping, this could save your life.

When you hire a roofing contractor, you must look at their background references. Once you’ve got them, check them out and ask about value and quality of the work. Also, go and look at the different addresses. Look at the work done and judge it for yourself.

Conduct a thorough roof inspection over the entire surface, so you do not miss any problem areas. The material should be bonded well, and fasteners are secured. If you want to work on a certain area, the material must be clean and dry. Be safe when working on the roof to avoid injury.

Ask the roofing contractors you are considering what materials they use most frequently. If you want a tile roof, but they have never laid one before, then they aren’t the best choice for your project. Make sure to ask them this question before you tell them what material you plan to use to avoid duplicity.

A few times a year, go into the attic and check out your insulation. If you find any of it is damp, you have a leak from the roof. While you may not have noticed any problems from below, checking the insulation will ensure that no further damage will be caused as you can fix the leak immediately.

When a vicious storm blows through, you will have to climb up to the roof to check for damage. Of course, look for any missing pieces, be they shingles or flashing. Also check your gutters for looseness and clogs, and check nearby trees for any limbs which are broken and could come crashing down on your home.

If you are looking for a dimensional look to your roof, architectural shingles can provide this. Instead of a flat appearance, architectural shingles provide “pop” to your roof. Each shingle is layered, giving the final product a very dimensional and intriguing look. Be sure to pick a quality architectural shingle for a longer sustained roof.

There are many small things that you will need to take into consideration when retaining a roofer. A punctual contractor is likely someone who is dependable. They should also give you a bid that’s typed as this is professional. Look for these and other important qualities when hiring a roofing contractor.

Consider having your roof done with architectural shingles. They’re more attractive and also last longer. Additionally, homes with this type of roofing are sought after by buyers, meaning it can actually add to your home’s resale value.

Inspect, or have someone else inspect your roof regularly. Keeping your roof in good shape can help prevent a lot of problems in the future. Your roof is a very important part of your home and helps protect the inside and the outside. Making sure that things are the way they need to be.

The first step to making the right decision when it comes to choosing roof material is learning about all of your options. You are already taking strides to making the best choice, especially if you are working on a certain budget. Remember the tips in this article when picking out your roofing material!

Landscape Design Service Benefits

When you step outside of your home, are you instantly swept into a garden space that makes you feel refreshed and ready to tackle the world, or do you suddenly find yourself facing a bed of weeds that adds to your stress? Landscaping design service carries many benefits, and will remove some of this stress by giving you a beautiful yard to look at each morning as you leave your home.

Become the Envy of Your Neighborhood

Having the nicest house on the block doesn’t just mean having the biggest house or the newest outdoor paint job. Landscape design service makes your home the envy of your street, allowing it to stand out among the rest of the homes in your neighborhood. With the right plan, plants, and decor, you can turn a boring front yard into one that people stop and take notice of when they drive by.

Better Maintenance Options

A properly landscaped home makes your seasonal maintenance easier. The right plan incorporates ideas for snow removal, leaf raking, and other seasonal outdoor chores. Quality designs also plan for the water that will be running through your yard when it rains, giving it a place to flow freely without creating divots and gullies in your yard.

A More Functional Space

A landscape design service doesn’t just look at the aesthetic appeal of your outdoor living space. It also focuses on making it more functional. You can add seating, lighting, and entertaining areas to make your outdoor space an offshoot of your home, giving you a place to relax with your family in comfort or entertain your guests in style. Swimming pools, ponds, and fire pits are often incorporated into outdoor designs to add a functional space to a beautiful garden. In commercial lots, sidewalks, paths, and parking areas can be incorporated into the overall designs to create a more aesthetically pleasing while still functional space.

An Emotional Benefit

A beautiful outdoor space gives you a calm place to go to relax and unwind after a busy day at work. Contrasting colors resonate with your emotions, lifting your spirits and helping stress melt away. The trickling water from a waterfall in your outdoor pond adds a tranquil sound to your outdoor space. The right landscape design service creates a look that can have a very real emotional benefit.

Hiring a Designer

If you are ready to benefit from these things, then you need to find the right designer for your outdoor living space. Designers know what plants grow well in your area and in your lighting conditions, how the plants should be spaced to best complement one another, and what elements should be added to create a beautiful yet functional outdoor living space. Check portfolio pictures for the companies on your radar, and choose one that has done spaces similar to what you are looking for. You will quickly find a landscape design service that has tastes similar to yours and an idea for your outdoor space that matches what you are dreaming about. With their help, you will be able to create the ideal garden or entertaining space for your home.

Success of a DIY Home Improvement Project

Gauging your success

How does one gauge the success of a do it yourself home improvement project? What level of expectations should we have upon their completion?

For a good many people, evaluation of a DIY home improvement project is out of the question. There is a general misconception that once a DIY project is done, it’s done. No need to further evaluate whether the project was really a success or not. The need to evaluate the success of a DIY project has two main goals:

o Establish whether the project had been executed according to plan.

o Establish whether you’re improving as compared to previous different projects that you have done before.

The criteria

1. Cost- how does one evaluate the true cost of a DIY project? Start with the basic raw materials. A central blueprint for any DIY project should have a list of the materials for the completion of a project. If the cost of the finished product and the projected cost of the project do not match, then this should be avoided in the future. A disparity of 25% from the actual cost can be acceptable.

The point of a DIY home improvement project is to basically save money. Saving money entails sticking to a budget- which has already been computed to be cheaper than actually hiring or buying finished goods.

In some rare instances, central plans have wrong computations- this is fine, as long as effort is given to remedy this problem in the future.

2. Finished product- whether you’re replacing floor boards or making a rocking chair, one particular consideration would be the finished product itself. Simply put, does it look good?

Of course, do not expect that a hand-made cabinet made with spare wood found in the garage can look as attractive as the ones you buy from a furniture store or a factory outlet. But at least, the finished product should look decent, in combination with other pieces of furniture in your home.

This criterion is especially important when you plan to make large-scale DIY home improvement projects, such as replacing walls or parts of the roof. Once you’re done, indeed, you’re done.

3. Timeframe- one thing should be made clear when we talk about DIY home improvement project timeframe: time does count. This issu can be discounted if you have a lot of free time in your hand: for instance, summer vacation or the like. But if you’re doing the DIY project on weekends, you have to make sure that you’re completing the phases of the project on time.

The reason for this criterion is that time is money when you think about it. If you spend three months creating a cabinet no bigger than a child’s table, then there is definitely something wrong with the project. Laziness should be eliminated in the picture- you can’t simply reason that you’ve been lazy. What would be the function of timeframe then?